Ten reasons employers should offer a childcare voucher scheme

Childcare voucher schemes offer employers and employees a stream of benefits. With the number of working parents in the UK rising, helping workers cope with childcare needs can be a great benefit for staff.

Here are the top 10 reasons you should offer childcare vouchers in your company:




1. Helps attract and retain the best staff.
2. Cuts down on administration.
3. Makes it easier for new parents to return to work.
4. Gives employees peace of mind with quality childcare.
5. Develops your company’s reputation as a employer with family-friendly policies.
6. Enhances your company’s overall benefits package.
7. Saves up to £373 per employee per year in employer’s national insurance contributions.
8. Outsourcing the function allows HR to concentrate on core competencies.
9. Gives your company a competitive advantage.
10. Makes employees feel highly valued and helps with motivation and productivity.


 

Legal implications

All childcare providers and facilities must be government-approved and HM Revenue & Customs must be notified of schemes. If vouchers are offered through salary sacrifice, employees’ contracts must be amended.

Tax changes

Prior to 6 April 2011 all parents could receive up to £55 per week of childcare vouchers exempt from national insurance and tax, regardless of earnings, and any parent who applied to join a scheme up to 5 April 2011 will receive the former rate indefinitely unless they change employer or leave their childcare voucher plan.

Employees who join a childcare voucher scheme after this date will receive exemptions of £55 per week (£243 per month) for basic rate tax payers, £28 per week (£124 per month) for higher rate tax payers or £22 per week (£97 per month) for additional rate tax payers.

Voucher provider vs in-house

Voucher schemes can be run in-house but most employers prefer to rely on childcare voucher companies to deliver schemes on their behalf. A reliable voucher supplier will provide marketing materials to make sure that as many staff as possible are reaping the benefits of the scheme and will undertake the responsibility of handling all required record keeping.

 

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